I've written against gun ownership in the current draft manuscript of DOF, and have long held the belief that once the monopoly for our defence is handed over to the state, we shouldn't need to hold arms. That's a somewhat Hobbesian view.
But I'm veering to a different view now.
The reason is not that guns are required defend against criminals (that's probably true but not at all a good argument, given the accidental misuse of guns), but that guns can become necessary to protect citizens against the state.
That sounds revolutionary, and it probably is.
Why do I fear the state? Isn't the modern state democratic? Doesn't it have checks and balances?
Yes, it does, but while reading Donna Laframboise's book, I wondered what would happen if ALL governments SHUT THEIR EYES to global deception and decided to impose their will by force?
In such situations, citizens may need to organise against the state.
Defence AGAINST THE STATE is the reason why this right is enshrined in the US Constitution (Second Amendment). This idea arose from the massacres of Protestants by state-led Catholics in France. These Protestants (some of them fled to America) reasoned that if they had access to arms, they could have minimised the brutality of the state.
The US, of course, is built on the foundations of a WAR of independence. Its founders were keenly aware that there can be some occasions when the state becomes the people's enemy. Hence all Americans still have a right to have guns.
While I've not finalised this logic of support for guns (against the state), I'm no longer anti-arms and will consider this argument further, on theoretical and practical grounds.
It is possible that we may need a constitutional provision that allows us to access arms when the state becomes a tyrant. But, of course, no state will permit access to arms when it has decided to impose its will by force.
Happy to hear suggestions on this fundamental theoretical conundrum about the state.
"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." [US Constitution]
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